Determinants of cancer disparities: barriers to cancer screening, diagnosis, and treatment

Surg Oncol Clin N Am. 2005 Oct;14(4):655-69, v. doi: 10.1016/j.soc.2005.06.002.


There is a critical disconnect between what we discover and what we deliver to all Americans in the form of prevention, screening, detection, diagnosis, and treatment of cancer. We must identify and eliminate all barriers that prevent the benefits of research from reaching all people. Such barriers may be experienced at any point along the continuum of prevention, screening, diagnosis and treatment, and palliative care. In communities of low socioeconomic status, patient navigation has proved to be an effective intervention in promoting such timely diagnosis and treatment when applied at the point of abnormal finding. Geographic areas with excess cancer mortality should be delineated and targeted with an intense approach to providing culturally relevant education, appropriate access to screening diagnosis and treatment, and improved support systems, including navigation.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Culture
  • Health Services Accessibility
  • Humans
  • Life Style
  • Medically Underserved Area
  • Minority Groups
  • Neoplasms / diagnosis*
  • Neoplasms / epidemiology
  • Neoplasms / prevention & control
  • Neoplasms / therapy*
  • Poverty
  • SEER Program
  • Social Justice
  • Socioeconomic Factors
  • United States / epidemiology